Road tolls

Status
Not open for further replies.

Mojo

Forum Staff
Staff Member
Administrator
Joined
7 Aug 2005
Messages
17,902
Location
0035
Whilst I agree with the idea provided it replaces vehicle excise and fuel duty, shouldn't we be working on lowering the price and improving the quality of train, tram and bus travel before anything else?

BBCNews said:
New Transport Secretary Douglas Alexander is due to announce a £10m fund for the development of nationwide road charging schemes.

He hopes new technology will allow drivers to be charged by the mile.

Mr Alexander, promoted in last week's reshuffle, is to outline how he intends to improve UK infrastructure with minimum environmental impact.

His predecessor at the department, Alistair Darling, announced several pilot road charging schemes.

Cambridge, Durham, Bristol, Bath, Greater Manchester, Shrewsbury, Tyne and Wear and the West Midlands were among the authorities developing road charging proposals.
Notice how none of them are in Scotland, and aside from in the West Mids and Tyne & Wear, none of them have any sort of "decent" public transport (tram/train)

BBCNews said:
Mr Alexander said road pricing was one of several measures that had been looked at to tackle congestion.

He said that it was time to face "certain basic facts" that as the nation's prosperity improved, people would want to travel more and to travel further.

"And as we travel more, because we live on a crowded island, congestion is set to grow, so if we do nothing we simply face eternal gridlock," he told BBC News.

The debate now was not so much about "why road pricing?", but "how it would be implemented", and the prize for motorists would be "better value out of the road network".

Investment in road capacity would continue where it was justified, Mr Alexander insisted.

And he said speed cameras had a role to play, adding: "I've seen it as a driver myself, there is absolutely no doubt where you have cameras, for example where there are tight bends in the road, it makes sense to slow drivers down."

Mr Alexander will be in York on Wednesday, where he will open a new bus service operated by transport giant First.

He will also announce the extension of the Oyster smartcard scheme in London, which will see the cards being accepted in the capital's mainline stations.

He said that while he did not want to prevent people enjoying the benefits of cheap air travel, he was concerned about the environmental impact.

"This is not simply a domestic problem, this is a challenge we need to meet internationally," he said.

"We believe the right way to address those environmental concerns is to bring aircraft within the emissions trading scheme we are trying to get established at the European Union."
But not improve rail links in this country and to Europe so airlines aren't needed?
 
Sponsor Post - registered members do not see these adverts; click here to register, or click here to log in
R

RailUK Forums

eezypeazy

Member
Joined
4 Jul 2005
Messages
626
Location
UK
This is, of course, just another complete waste of government time and taxpayers' money.

We already have a road pricing scheme - it's called fuel tax. It's directly related to the amount of road you use - the more you drive, the more fuel you burn, the more tax you pay.

It is a fallacy to suggest that many car journeys are unecessary. If your journey is necessary today, then it still will be after road pricing, you'll still make the journey, the congestion will be the same, and the government has pledged that, overall, the scheme will be tax-neutral - so absolutely nothing changes, except that a private company will charge millions for the technology to make it happen!

If the government was serious about reducing private car journeys to reduce congestion and improve the environment, they would be doubling or even trebling fuel tax. And, ahead of this, they would be pump-priming the public transport system with investment.

This week, I have cycled to work for the first three days; I'm intending to use the train on Thursday and Friday. On Saturday, I'm cycling and using a service bus to get to a team building event at Kielder, and cycling back on Sunday. The next time I shall use my car will be on Monday - eight days after it last turned a wheel! Now, if we all managed to do without our cars on say, just one day a week, the government's revenue from fuel tax would fall by about 15%; so, if the government wanted this to be tax-neutral, the rate of fuel tax would have to increase by 15%! Gedditt?? If road pricing really works to reduce road usage so that, in theory, just one person drove one mile in a whole year, the fuel he used would need to carry the entire tax burden! Yep, it's the sort of economics that would put Mickey Mouse to shame!

We need to be proving to people that there are already decent alternatives to private cars, not just toying with pricing mechanisms.

eezypeazy
 

Tom B

Established Member
Joined
27 Jul 2005
Messages
4,552
Trouble is, public transport usage is going down - in this area alone bus usage has dropped by 68% in the past 15 years, and it's a similar picture nationwide. Not surprising, given the quality of service provided - if it were better, people would use it.
 

Lewisham2221

Member
Joined
23 Jun 2005
Messages
1,014
Location
Staffordshire
Cockfosters said:
Trouble is, public transport usage is going down - in this area alone bus usage has dropped by 68% in the past 15 years, and it's a similar picture nationwide. Not surprising, given the quality of service provided - if it were better, people would use it.
I agree with you entirely there. In most cases the transport companies are cutting back services and offering a poorer quality overall service, which results in less passengers using public transport and more using cars. Whereas, if they did the opposite and provided the kind of service that people want, surely more people would use public transport and public transport would make more money?
 

Tom B

Established Member
Joined
27 Jul 2005
Messages
4,552
Indeed, but of course there is chronic short-termism - keep the expenditure low in the short term even if that may result in long term revenue dropping.

Bring back regulation. As has been shown, regulation works. It's not as if there's any competition as it is...
 

yorkie

Forum Staff
Staff Member
Administrator
Joined
6 Jun 2005
Messages
49,906
Location
Yorkshire
Cockfosters said:
Trouble is, public transport usage is going down - in this area alone bus usage has dropped by 68% in the past 15 years, and it's a similar picture nationwide. Not surprising, given the quality of service provided - if it were better, people would use it.
The opposite is true in York (bus journies are up!), but sadly the right-wing Press and some vocal right-wing car drivers are campaigning to get the cost of motoring down and campaigning against new bus services. :banghead: If the tories, or new (relatively right-wing) labour get in next year I fear we may see the current situation reversed :(
 
H

HR2

Guest
IIRC When bus services and were deregulated we were told that it would increase competition and improve things as there would be lots of operators vying for custom. What do we see today though? Apart from a few arms length and well run local authority set ups [Edinburgh] all we seem to see are the big three. Arrive, Go-Ahead and Stagecoach.

Incidentally [Rob Curling again] of the big three, which has the nicest livery? I'd plump for Go-Ahead with Arriva second. Stagecoach has an absolutely appalling livery if you can call it that. Looks like a cross between an ambulance and an ice cream cart which car and other drivers can't see well in foggy and gloomy conditions.
 

eezypeazy

Member
Joined
4 Jul 2005
Messages
626
Location
UK
DistrictLine said:
IIRC When bus services and were deregulated we were told that it would increase competition and improve things as there would be lots of operators vying for custom. What do we see today though? Apart from a few arms length and well run local authority set ups [Edinburgh] all we seem to see are the big three. Arrive, Go-Ahead and Stagecoach.
Where Bob and I live, recently we've seen a perfect example of the effect of a deregulated bus industry. An independent (Tyne Blue Line) put on an hourly service through housing estates in Prudhoe that were not previously well served by Arriva. The bus went to MetroCentre and Newcastle. Arriva responded by pulling two vehicles off a commecial service to the hamlet of Clara Vale, leaving them busless, and putting them onto a competing Prudhoe express service. Clara Vale then got a subsidised Go Ahead bus service, but only to MetroCentre. So as to maintain their competitive position against Arriva through Crawcrook and Ryton, Go Ahead felt compelled to increase Sunday services (there's a phrase you don't hear often!) on the same corridor. Tyne Blue Line couldn't survive Arriva's competition, so their service has been withdrawn.

Overall result? Public subsidy increased to give Clara Vale a poorer service; and an unsustainably high Sunday frequency of six buses an hour. What bets that, having seen off the competition, the Sunday service will go down to three an hour again?


DistrictLine said:
of the big three, which has the nicest livery? I'd plump for Go-Ahead with Arriva second. Stagecoach has an absolutely appalling livery if you can call it that. Looks like a cross between an ambulance and an ice cream cart which car and other drivers can't see well in foggy and gloomy conditions.
For me, it's Arriva first - the fleets up here always look clean and smart. Go Ahead, in my opinion, overbrand their buses in the North East with too many labels and stickers. I've never liked the Stagecoach liveries.

eezypeazy
 

Tom B

Established Member
Joined
27 Jul 2005
Messages
4,552
A similar thing happened here. There used to be some competition between the main 3 operators here - Mainline (the biggest), Wilfreda Beehive and Leon. Then Mainline were taken over by First, who bought WBH's service routes out, and launched an attack on Leon. Coupel of years ago, First put the fare down on a particular route and altered it so it would take trade off Leon, when Leon went to the SYPTE they were "out of money". Yeah. Then Leon pulled out of that route, and the Knight In Shining Armour that is First group sailed in and offered to run a replacement if subsidised. How nice, says the SYPTE, and hands them a wad of cash. Result? More subsidy, less service, higher fares, no competition. They don't care about the area now, as they know they've monopolised - since taking over they've taken over the two competing routes and as such can put the fares up ridiculously. £3.90 for a return over one fare stage is stupidly high (yes I know the ticket is valid for a whole day but does anyone actually use it for a full day?)
 

HSTfan!!!

Established Member
Joined
11 Jun 2005
Messages
1,966
I don't see this system working either way, think of the amount of cars on the road, if they're going to log our every mile and get us to pay for it x by the amount of cars on british roads..... they're going to use a computer to handle that I guess??? (probably running windows) it just won't work.
Besides don't they get enough out of us already what with car tax (which they have dropped I know - for some of us - increased for others) and fuel tax - fuel prices are bloody expensive so they must be getting a fair bit of tax of us.
 

Nick W

Established Member
Joined
5 Nov 2005
Messages
1,438
Location
Cambridge
The problem is that rail is heavily biased towards London.

Therefore roads like the M25 and A14 get congested.

Also small rail journeys are really slow. My journey from school to home today was 2 hours compared to 40 mins by car. I admit that only 35 minutes was spent on a train.

Left school at 3.
Cycled in Colchester then got 3:50 train (couldn't get 2:50)
and got outside Ipswich station at about 4:15.
Cycled to Derby Road and got a train about 4:35 to Felixstowe arriving at 4:51 or so.
Cycled home for 5.

Now by car, it would be left school and 3, got home at 3:40.

Sadly I couldn't leave the GCSE exam early to get 2:50 train, but a car can be started anytime.

Anyone got any ideas on how short railways journeys or railway journeys not to London could be made faster?

Admittedly if the GEML and Felixstowe line had trains every 6 minutes at 40mph I could have got home quicker.....
 

Nick W

Established Member
Joined
5 Nov 2005
Messages
1,438
Location
Cambridge
Very true, living in Felixstowe, gonig by London is often quicker than cross country, but then slower than car.

I think we need a high speed route parrallel to the A14 and M6, and when I say high speed I mean an average speed of over 80mph.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Top